Justice served: Saudi consulate attacker sentenced to 14 years in prison

KARACHI: An anti-terrorism court sentenced on Wednesday a man to 14 years in prison after convicting him of carrying out a bomb attack on the Saudi consulate four years ago.

Zaki Kazmi, said to be affiliated with militant group Mehdi Force, was found guilty of hurling two hand grenades at the consulate in Defence Housing Authority on May 11, 2011. The HE-36-type grenades caused no casualties, but did, however, shatter the building’s windowpanes.

The suspect was taken into custody nearly five months after the incident by the then Crime Branch SSP, Farooq Awan, in a raid conducted in the Eidgah area of the city. SSP Awan had told the media at a press conference that the suspect, in collusion with his accomplice, Syed Tabish Hussain alias Asif Mamu, attacked the consulate in retaliation after the Saudi government sent military assistance to the Bahraini government against the Shia community who had staged protests.

According to the prosecution, the suspects were on a motorcycle when they carried out the attack. Kazmi hurled the bombs while Hussain drove the bike, it maintains. Hussain was, however, gunned down during a shootout with the police in Gulistan-e-Jauhar area the same day his accomplice was arrested. The investigators, on a lead given by Kazmi, raided Hussain’s hideout in Rabia City. However, he offered resistance and was subsequently killed in the clash.

The ATC-IV judge, Abdul Naeem Memon, who conducted the trial inside the prison for security reasons, also ordered the confiscation of the convict’s moveable and immoveable property.

Meanwhile, another ATC awarded the same 14 year imprisonment to three men associated with the banned Lashkar-e-Jhangvi. Ahsanullah alias Qari Imran, Dost Muhammad and Wali Muhammad were convicted in five cases of attempted murder, possessing illicit weapons and explosives. They were arrested in March this year by the counter-terrorism department.

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